Chicano study question
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•How do the cultural representations and cultural practices of Chicanos/as reflect
their continuing struggle for freedom and empowerment, not only vis-à-vis Anglo
American dominant society, but also within the community?
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Answer the above question by constructing a clear thesis. The thesis equals your main
claim or assertion, along with supporting claims that make the overall argument
compelling. To substantiate your argument and defend your position, you must engage
with the required readings from weeks six through ten.
Specifically, you must balance your analysis and your voice with a mix of interwoven
key quotes and paraphrasing. There is no “correct” answer to the question, but you must
compose a persuasive essay by supporting your argument with the evidence presented in
the class materials. In this regard, you do not have to agree with the required authors, but
you must address their theoretical concepts and analytical assertions. You may counter
or dispute the authors’ claims to advance your argument, support your point of view, or
make an original point. You may also quote the lectures and films from throughout the
quarter, but do not use any outside sources. For specific course readings that you have
quoted or paraphrased, refer to authors’ names in the body of the essay text, within
sentences, or in parentheses after sentences. Cite lecture material as (lecture).
There is no maximum quota for how many required course readings you must
incorporate; however, the best essays usually manage to sustain an engagement with a
wide range of respective readings. Similarly, the best essays usually manage to address
each component of the question (be sure to show how representations and practices
reflect the struggle, as articulated above, not only in relation to the dominant society, but
also within the community). Do not rehash your midterm essay, although you can build
on and expand ideas that you developed earlier while delving deeper into the course
To answer the final exam question, it may be helpful to consider the following:
pachucos; pachucas; subcultures; style; gender norms; masculinity; Chicana Studies;
Chicana feminisms; “the personal is political;” familia; cultural nationalism; sexuality;
the public sphere; stereotypes; icons; cultural politics; cultural identity; mainstream;
List of readings:
Charles Tatum, “Music” (2001)
Anthony Macías, “Latin Holidays: Mexican Americans, Latin Music, and Cultural Identity in Postwar Los Angeles,” (2005)
Gastón Espinosa, “Mexican Madonna: Selena and the Politics of Cultural Redemption” (2008)
Yvette Doss, “Choosing Chicano in the 1990s: The Underground Music Scene of Los(t) Angeles” (1998).
Carlos Cortés, “Who is Maria? What is Juan? Dilemmas of Analyzing the Chicano Image in U.S. Feature Films” (1992)
Christine List, “Self-Directed Stereotyping in the Films of Cheech Marin” (1992)
Rosa Linda Fregoso, “Homegirls, Cholas, and Pachucas in Cinema: Taking Over the Public Sphere” (1995).
Alfredo Mirandé, “And Ar’n’t I a Man? Toward a Chicano/Latino Men’s Studies” (1997)
Gregory Rodriguez, “Boxing and Masculinity: The History and (Her)story of Oscar de la Hoya” (2002);
Ana María Juárez and Stella Beatriz Kerl “What Is the Right (White) Way to Be Sexual?: Reconceptualizing Latina Sexuality” (2003).
Bernice Zamora, “Notes From a Chicana Co-Ed” (1977); Lorna Dee Cervantes, “Beneath the Shadow of the Freeway” (1981);
Alma García, “Studying Chicanas: Bringing Women Into the Frame of Chicano Studies” (1986);
Denise Segura and Beatriz Pesquera, “Beyond Indifference and Antipathy: The Chicana Movement and Chicana Feminist Discourse” (1988-1990);
Patricia Zavella, “Reflections on Diversity Among Chicanas” (1997).
Arturo Madrid, “In Search of the Authentic Pachuco: An Interpretive Essay” (1974)
Catherine Ramírez, “Crimes of Fashion: The Pachuca and Chicana Style Politics” (2002).
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